Is Princeton Still Looking for "Green Hair"?

I believe I read that ~2008 the president said something along the lines of Princeton looking for green-haired applicants, which was obviously a metaphor for finding a more diverse/slightly off-kilter class and attempting to shed away the rich, country-club stereotype Princeton still carries.

I was curious if this is still true today, as I haven’t really heard much of it today. Obviously Princeton would never pick one of these off-kilter kids if they weren’t qualified, but does an off-kilter, more “unique” kid get a bump in admissions compared to the class pres/NHS pres/etc. (not saying that these can’t be equally unique and fascinating people!). To word it slightly different, as I know being unique and strong and passionate is always preferred, does being unique and strong and passionate in a more “out there” type of activity/having more of an “out there” type of personality benefit you?

For example, my common app essay is written about the contributions I make on a Disney Princess fan page as a gay male, and I have other supplementals written about my interest in Germanic languages like Norwegian and heavily reference my interest in social justice in my ECs/essays. I believe this classifies me in with the “green-hair” that was being referenced, though my hair is about the blandest brown you’ll ever see. Would this give me any sort of “boost”?

I’m honestly just curious, as I’m not even sure if I want to apply to Princeton (and the answers to this, even if all positive, won’t be influencing my decision…my trip to visit my friend later this month at Princeton will however). Also curious if any other schools are also on an active recruit for “green hair”. Thanks for taking your time to read this and thanks in advance for any comments! Best of luck to all the candidates who applied SCEA, those with green-hair and without!

FWIW - I saw a bunch of blue, red, pink and purple hair on campus… :wink:

You should def apply, and be you.

Does anyone have any other thoughts concerning this? This isn’t so much a chance thread (well, obviously, there aren’t any stats listed!) as it is a question as to if what the president said however many years ago still rings true today.

Why don’t you wait until you’re on campus with your friend and his/her friends and see for yourself?

I don’t think an interest in social justice is going to make you stand out, as that is fairly commonplace. Your Disney princess essay sounds memorable though.

While this isn’t exactly what you asked (and clearly your grades, test scores and depth of extracurricular involvement will be paramount), I do think that Princeton has a slight preference for “artsy” kids - not sure about green hair per se. Because of an outdated reputation for being more preppy than comparable schools, Princeton tends to attract fewer kids interested in the arts than say Yale or Brown, and it has spent a lot of money building a new arts neighborhood and wants to fill its programs and facilities (for example, it just started a concentration in musical theater). Obviously, an interest in the arts is not the same as being an “off-kilter” alternative kid, but I do suspect that a well-written essay about a Disney princess fan page would be welcomed. I can also tell you that Princeton is extremely LGBTQ-friendly.